From preschool to world school
Marion County has a new extension agent for family consumer sciences.
After two years as director of Stepping Stones preschool at Valley United Methodist Church, Tristen Cope is now reaching out to a broader audience.
“I loved getting to interact with the children, the families, and the church,” Cope said.
She’ll miss her work as Valley’s educator and outreach person, and miss having interaction with children on a daily basis, but she’s ready to step up to a bigger challenge. With a new position, she’ll have new opportunities.
“I love reaching out to families and reaching out to the community, so when I saw there was an opportunity to do that for my hometown community, I took it,” Cope said.
Cope’s degree is in family studies and human services with emphasis on early childhood education. That knowledge served her well as a preschool teacher and will serve her well in her new role.
One goal already on her to-do list is developing a means of letting families who consider moving to Marion County know what resources are available.
Knowing availability of resources such as child care, preschools, and the like can help families decide whether towns in the county have what they will need.
Outreach on nutrition is another thing in Cope’s plan.
Working with 4-H will give her the most interaction with children and families. She hopes to inspire more 4-H’ers to take on family-related projects. She doesn’t plan to steam in there full-speed ahead, though.
“The first year is kind of an observation year,” Cope said. “After that is time to start reaching out to the community and offering new ideas.”
Cope was born and raised in Marion. She is the daughter of Danny and Tammy Snelling.